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Author: Linas Jegelevicius

Navalny is a symbol of the opposition, not its leader

An interview with Boris Vishnevsky, a columnist and opposition member of the St Petersburg legislative assembly. Interviewer: Linas Jegelevicius

LINAS JEGELEVICIUS: Did you take part in the recent protests in support of Alexei Navalny?

BORIS VISHNEVSKY: No, I did not. I act in a different role. Most recently, there were only two Russia-wide demonstrations in support of Navalny – on January 23rd and January 31st. Instead of marching with the demonstrators, I helped those who, as a result of these marches, ended up in the hands of the militia and security forces. Setting them free takes much longer and requires a lot of painstaking and time-consuming work. My assistance includes various forms, including legal aid in the courts.

April 11, 2021 - Boris Vishnevsky Linas Jegelevicius

Rail Baltica strives to stay on track

The ambitious Rail Baltica project that aims to build a rail link from Helsinki to Poland has hit many hurdles and continues to face many setbacks. Despite some progress in overcoming these barriers, many questions remain unanswered – including whether the rail system will be operational in 2026, as planned.

The staggering 5.8 billion euro Rail Baltica project, to be built from the Estonian capital of Tallinn to the Lithuanian-Polish border, has become so complicated and sophisticated that the Latvian Transport Minister, Talis Linkaits, recently admitted that “Something will be built by the end of 2025, for sure.”

May 2, 2019 - Linas Jegelevicius

Like in the good, old American movies…

A conversation with Nijolė Oželytė-Vaitiekūnienė, a prominent Lithuanian actress. Interviewer: Linas Jegelevicius

LINAS JEGELEVICIUS: In recent interviews, you have labelled yourself Homo Sovieticus, a sardonic and critical reference to the average conformist person living in the Soviet Union. How is this compatible with you being a woman who has spoken out many times on woman rights and who has travelled the world after the restoration of independence in 1990?

NIJOLĖ OŽELYTĖ-VAITIEKŪNIENĖ: All of us who were born during the years of Soviet occupation are Homo Sovieticus, more or less. In fact, we – that generation – shouldn’t be ashamed of it, deny or repudiate it. When I think of the past, I like to use the example of the victims of Stockholm syndrome.

January 2, 2019 - Linas Jegelevicius

There is no question – we are able to defend ourselves

An interview with Raimonds Bergmanis, the Latvian minister of defence. Interviewer Linas Jegelevicius

LINAS JEGELEVICIUS: In a recent interview, your Lithuanian counterpart claimed that the situation in which the Baltics face now is “the riskiest and most dangerous since 1990”. Do you agree with this assessment?

RAIMONDS BERGMANIS: It is relative and the context should be taken into account. In the 1990s, our countries were still in the process of recovery and building our new state institutions like the armed forces, intelligence, security forces, etc. Alongside the domestic challenges, we were experiencing Russian pressure as well. We were vulnerable back then and, by no means, were these risk-free times. We were lucky that Russia was also vulnerable. However, it was not until 2004 when we joined NATO that we were able to have a real sense of security.

January 2, 2018 - Linas Jegelevicius Raimonds Bergmanis

Lithuania Behind the EU Wheel (with criminals in power?)

If the European Union was really looking for transparency and integrity in an EU presidency host, Lithuania might well be the least suitable candidate for that mission today. And maybe even less fit for the task than Hungary, gripped by its constitutional crisis during its EU presidency, was, or Belgium, which chaired the EU with […]

December 19, 2012 - Linas Jegelevicius

Putin Inauguration Ball With (out) Baltic States’ Presidents?

The presidents of the three Baltic States of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have modestly congratulated Russia’s new president, but whether Moscow will invite the Baltic leaders to the inaugural ball in the Kremlin at the beginning of May remains a big question. Putin’s words Am I too naïve? Isn’t it too brave to expect a […]

March 15, 2012 - Linas Jegelevicius

Saying Hello in Latvia: Sveiki, dzintara Latvija or Здраствуй, янтарная Латвия?

Latvians took the polls this past weekend in a referendum to decide whether Russian should be the second official language. While the referendum overwhelmingly failed, its implications on Latvian politics, and the region as a whole, remain less certain. In a large part of Latvia, you can still get on with “Sveiki, dzintara Latvija”, which […]

February 22, 2012 - Linas Jegelevicius

Polish President, Gay Rights and Radicals in Lithuania

In anticipation of February 16th, Lithuanian Independence Day, Polish President Bronisław Komorowski and homosexuals have drawn the most exasperation and contempt from many (ultra) patriots in Lithuania. Quite ironically, the Polish head of state and a bunch of openly gay Lithuanians have been chastised for the same thing. Nationalistically-inclined skinheads, ultras and other radicals do […]

February 16, 2012 - Linas Jegelevicius

A (Con)federation of Three Baltic States?

Have you heard of the new (con)federation of Latlitestia? How about some facts. It is a state with a population of six million people; intertwined historically, economically, culturally and politically as tightly as perhaps few European states are. As for its location, it is sprawled along the Baltic Sea coast. I am speaking, of course, […]

January 31, 2012 - Linas Jegelevicius

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